, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 10 — President Uhuru Kenyatta on Saturday launched the new Jubilee Party with calls for an end to divisive politics which he blamed for hampering development and provoking ethnic tensions in the country.
Speaking at the Kasarani National Stadium where supporters had turned out in their thousands, President Kenyatta emphasised the need for peaceful elections, mature and issue based politics.
“The party we launch here today is an expression of our unity, our oneness, and our togetherness. In launching it we renew and we strengthen the ties that bind Kenyans together. We rise from the ashes of conflict to express the beauty of reconciliation and collective purpose,” he said.
“The men and women who came before us, and to whom we owe our freedom understood this. They taught us that without unity, we cannot be free. That is a lesson we have keenly learned. It is a lesson we will never forget. And it is why we gather here today,” the President added.
The aim of the new party, he explained, was to offer leadership and give an example of what a united Kenya can achieve in its democracy, development and social life as a whole.
He believed if Kenya stayed focused and united, the unfinished work of delivering development to every Kenyan and every region would become a reality.
“There are still children in Kenya who struggle to find a school. There are parents who still have difficulty finding skilled medical care for their children. There are young Kenyans who want to work but who cannot find the jobs they need to support their families,” he said.
“And, yes, if we look deep into our hearts, we will remember that we have been divided and that this has frustrated our search for the growth and stability that would allow us to build truly shared prosperity.”
Citing the sad memories of the 1992 clashes and the 2007/8 Post Election Violence in Kenya, the President urged Kenyans to learn from mistakes of negative ethnicity and embrace peace to ensure the country never again loses a life because of an election.
“Our generation has learnt from your mistakes. We refuse to make them all over again. We cannot go back. We will not go back. Let this generation — let our generation – fulfill its responsibility and destiny to lead us on a path of unity to reach the heights that you once dreamt of.”
While he has expressed confidence that he will successfully defend his seat in 2017, he said he was committed to a fair electoral race and issue based politics.
He challenged his political opponents to face him and his party but in a competition that is based on issues and not petty politics.
The President also took pride in the achievements of his administration at the colorful affair attended by thousands of supporters including defectors from other parties.
READ: Jubilee makes inroads in the Opposition as 40 MPs defect